Community Leader Ted Mattison dies

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By Stan Welch
Community leader Theodore ‘Ted’ Mattison passed away on Friday, April 24, at the age of 83,.
Mattison was well known in Williamston for a life of service to his church and to his community. His final achievement was his recognition as the 2019 Upstate Black History Maker. Mattison was recognized by Anderson County Council in January and Williamston Town Council in February.
Born in December of 1936, Mattison grew up in his family’s home on Cherokee Road in Williamston. He attended both Caroline Elementary School and Caroline High School, graduating in 1954 with honors. He attended Livingstone College, but left in 1956 to join the United States Air Force.
He served two tours in Viet Nam and was awarded the Bronze Star, which is awarded for heroic or meritorious service.
After a twenty year career, Mattison retired as a senior master sergeant. He worked for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for a time before returning to Williamston in 1984. He soon opened Professional Exterminators, which he owned and operated for twenty three years.
He was one of the founders of the Williamston Action Community Club, which sought to develop opportunities through a variety of programs. The group purchased the old Caroline School and opened the Caroline Community Center. Mattison served as president and director for eighteen years.
County Councilwoman Cindy Wilson says that Mattison was absolutely key in saving the Center. “I met Mr. Mattison when I first ran for county council. He would appear before the council seeking help and funding for the center and the community it serves. He brought very diverse people together in an extraordinary way. He was a great leader, and he led by example. His was a remarkable life of achievement and service. It was an honor and a pure pleasure to work with such a godly man.”
  In 1999, at age sixty three, Mattison earned a Bachelor of Sciences degree in operational management from Voorhees College.
Mattison was very  active in the operations of New Prospect Missionary Baptist Church, performing multiple roles and duties. His service extended to the secular world as well. He served on the Anderson County Human Relations Commission, the Appalachian Council of Government and its committee on aging.
Other activities included his presence in Envision Williamston and its economic development efforts, and his six years as resident of the Minority Businesses Association.
Williamston Mayor Mack Durham called Mattison a true blessing to the town of Williamston, and to Anderson county as well. “We must count ourselves very fortunate that such a selfless man, such a servant to his community returned to Williamston to live after his military career. Williamston would be a different place today, had Mr. Ted chosen otherwise.”